International Trade Treaties

The Dominican Republic has joined the most important international trade agreements as part of its key strategy to position itself among the three fastest growing economies in Latin America. According to the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic, the country has experienced a growth of its Gross Domestic Product (GDP) of 6.7% in the first half of 2018 compared to the first half of 2017. Many strategic engines that generate growth are underway economic of the country. The development and promotion of free trade zones is a basic pillar to boost growth, attracting goods that will be sold in other countries. Further on you will find more information about trade agreements and their role in the Dominican Republic.

The Free Trade Agreement between the Dominican Republic, Central America and the United States of America (FTA) is a treaty that promotes stability, prosperity and investment between the United States, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. The purpose of the FTA is to expand and diversify trade, and increase investment opportunities among the members of each country, ensuring the protection of intellectual property rights and creating a commercial business framework.

This trade agreement is an essential tool for the development of the economy of the Dominican Republic, in addition to allowing the strengthening of its commercial relations. It has a consolidated preferential tariff regime for Dominican exports to the US market, and has led the Dominican government to transform the structures of its institutions, modifying the legal and commercial framework.

The FTA opens the market, reduces barriers in services, fosters competition and protects intellectual property rights. NAFTA is an important tool for foreign investors. The treaty clearly states that conditions, treatment and equal rights will be provided to both domestic and foreign investors in the signatory countries. When the registration is made in the correct terms, the FTA requires protection of the copyright, industrial property, and intellectual property of each individual. The treaty also specifies that any person from a country belonging to the agreement has the right to patent their own investments and discoveries, and will be protected by the law of the member country as a national investor.

The Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA) is a free trade agreement between the European Union (EU) and the Caribbean Forum (CARIFORUM), an organization of Caribbean nations that includes Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Saint Lucia, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, Trinidad and Tobago, and the Dominican Republic. The EPA focuses on financial and investment opportunities, allowing tariff-free access to Caribbean products to the 28 countries that make up the EU.

The EPA provides assistance to Caribbean countries, fostering regional integration, reducing poverty, and encouraging the development of the global economy. The Dominican Republic entered the EPA in October 2008. Under the EPA, market access is asymmetric, protecting less developed nations from being devoured by trade with the EU. Exports from the Caribbean countries to the 28 countries of the EU are broad in quantity of products, while provisions for similar imports from the EU to the Caribbean are subject to restrictions of up to 25 years with the necessary safeguards. These guarantees protect local employment and the most sensitive industries in the Caribbean nations.

The EPA, together with the FTA, offers international investors and local producers in the Dominican Republic unprecedented access to free trade with two of the largest markets. of the world, that of the European Union and that of the United States.

The Caribbean Community (CARICOM ) is an organization composed of Caribbean nations, whose objective is the promotion of economic integration and cooperation among member countries. Signed in 1998 and ratified by the Dominican Republic in 2001, this treaty establishes free trade zones in the region, respecting the guidelines of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Trade between the Dominican Republic and the more developed Caribbean nations occurs equitably and reciprocally, while acting differently in less developed nations such as Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Montserrat, Saint Kitts and Nevis , Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and Haiti.

The free trade agreement between the Dominican Republic and CARICOM coexists with the EPA.

En 1998 se firmó un tratado de comercio entre la República Dominicana y los países de América Central: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua y Honduras. Se ratificó en 2001. Este acuerdo permite el libre comercio de todos los productos originarios de cada región con la excepción de una lista registrada.

Signed in 1985, this free trade agreement with Panama did not enter into force until 2003. The agreement provides the benefits of liberalized trade for certain products.

1.Products that have free access to the markets of both countries (bidirectional products).
2. Dominican products that can be exported freely to Panama.
3. Panamanian products that can be exported freely to the Dominican Republic.
4.Products manufactured in free trade zones.

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